2020 has been one hell of a year so far, wildfires in Australia, Mass floods in the UK and then the Coronavirus Pandemic hit the world, basically turning the entire world on its head! For the voluntary team behind Hoggin The Bridge it has caused some major changes and decisions to be made.
An update from the Committee
Safety has and always will be the priority of the Hoggin The Bridge ride, not just for its riders who take part in the annual ride but also for all the stewards, volunteers, marshals, bands, traders and caterers that provide so much behind the scenes to make the event as enjoyable as possible.
2020 is the 20th year of Hoggin The Bridge, fittingly held in 2020 and with the potential to hit the £200,000 total raised for charity, with all this in mind the event was meant to be its biggest yet.
HogFest had planned to be held across the weekend of the 14th, 15th and 16th August, with camping, live entertainment throughout the entire weekend, bands, comedians, ride outs through the fabulous Wye Valley and the amazing experience of joining thousands of fellow bikers cross the infamous Severn Bridge.
Unfortunately, the CoVid pandemic has put paid to that. Shops and leisure services are reopening now slowly, but the virus is still prevalent, still in our communities and still sadly taking lives on a daily basis.
We have a duty of care to everyone involved in the event, as well as the towns and communities the event is held in to make sure that we do what we can to keep people safe. The committee behind HogFest have been in contact frequently with each other, discussing other ways and options for being able to run the event. However, safety has to be a priority.
Will this year’s event go ahead?
The committee have made the heart-breaking decision to cancel this years HogFest event in its entirety. This is not a decision that has been taken easily, and has certainly caused a few heated discussions within the team, but it is proper and right for us to do what we can to help reduce the risks involved.
The committee did look at just holding the ride across the bridge and not hold the end venue event, but felt that it was going to be difficult to enforce the “keep safe” rule at the starting point at Brightside Insurance Group.
The committee also looked at postponing to event back to October, when the event is usually held, however, due to the change of venue, this was a risky option, if the weather was bad, it would be very difficult to find enough hardstanding for all bikers, and the weather is always such a focal point of the success of the event, look how wet 2019 was!
We also looked at limited number of entries, now, while this could work, the thing that makes the event such as success is the huge following that Hoggin The Bridge has. Numbers would need to be restricted so much that we felt it would not be fair to those who religiously take part in the annual ride, not to get the chance to get tickets to the event.
We have taken advice from Welsh Government and the local Safety Advisory Group and feel that the best and only real option available to us was to cancel the event for 2020.
However, there is a silver lining to this dark cloud. It gives the team behind the event even longer to be able to prepare for a successful and jam packed 2021 event, held in August, in Caldicot.
We dont have a confirmed date yet, but we are promising an amazing line up of live music, live entertainment, fun, food, camping, ride outs and so much more.
What about Merchandise?
Being a charitable group, Hoggin the Bridge gives all the profits from the event to charity, unfortunately however there has been running costs for 2020, which have been unavoidable.
We have decided to sell a slightly ‘tongue-in-cheek’ HTB T-shirt to help cover some of these running costs, which will be available to purchase on our store from now.
Prices are £10 for a t-shirt and £22 for a hoddie, both will have the image above on the rear, with the Hoggin The Bridge logo on the front breast.
What if I have already purchased tickets?
For those who have already purchased tickets, or merchandise, we will be making direct contact with everyone over the next couple of weeks. The options available are;
A full refund of ticket/Merchandise
Refund of Ticket only – Merchandise sent out based on this years design
Roll over your Ticket/Merchandise to the 2021 event
Donate your Ticket/Merchandise to help towards annual running costs.